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Is COVID strategy moving towards herd-immunity?!

Dave Zan

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Are you from Florida like Ray here? You...are still...better than Brazil, or India, or Mexico...
Covid.PNG


Well...based on today's data.
USA has more Total Cases, more New Cases, more Total Deaths, more New Deaths, more Active Cases, more Serious, Critical.
And it's worse even adjusted for population, worse Tot. Cases/1M pop, worse Deaths/1M pop.
How is this better than Brazil, India or Mexico?
It is not true, for even one number.
Can we please keep the discussion based on reality?
Then Thomas won't have to close it down.
No doubt the numbers and ranks will alter over time but even then how will it be acceptable to claim "at least there's more dead in ###"?

Best wishes
David
 
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Vasr

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Between May 1 and July 20, 2020... 123,104 deaths were recorded in France - with deaths due to Covid19 included - 3% less than in 2019 and 1% less than in 2018.
Where did you get that data? That death number seems far too high for less than 3 months.
https://www.economist.com/graphic-detail/2020/07/15/tracking-covid-19-excess-deaths-across-countries

And is it for the same period in 2019 and 2018 or for the whole period?

France total deaths were in the 10k a month range according to The Economist. Only recently have they dipped below expected death for a short interval but Economist couldn't get any death data after Jun 15th from France.

Just asking because there is a lot of unreliable data out there.
 

Putter

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The main strategy up to now was trying to contain it through total lockdowns (worked in China/asia, most of EU, etc). Looks like the thinking is evolving towards a herd-immunity strategy, more or less what Sweden did/does. That might be 'the new rule' during a potential 2nd wave.

Oxford opinion
https://reaction.life/we-may-already-have-herd-immunity-an-interview-with-professor-sunetra-gupta/
An interesting "dark matter" theory
https://medium.com/@karlfriston/immunological-dark-matter-b48e20bba9ea
Or the 'popular' version
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2...rmany-may-have-more-immunological-dark-matter

Do you see more signs of that or its just a minor/isolated trend?!

P.S.
of course all the above is based on the (pretty feeble) assumption that COVID will not suffer serious mutations
It seems like this article (the Oxford one) needs a point by point rebuttal. The latter 2 appear to be opinions that there are better models for the epidemiology of the Corona virus.

My first objection is the misleading title of the article. We have NOT reached herd immunity except possibly in some particularly hard hit areas in NYC, Italy and Spain at the cost of thousand of deaths and a significant percentage of survivors with long term disabilities such as lung damage, kidney and heart damage, and 'brain fog'. In this view a better comparison may not be the seasonal flu, but rather polio which both killed and paralyzed albeit in greater numbers than Covid.

The first question to her from Alastair Benn In the debate over T-cell immunity or cross-reactivity with coronaviruses, the common-sense view is that exposure to things that are similar does give you some protection, and it seems to be borne out in recent studies.

When I see the the words 'common-sense' a red flag goes up. It's common sense that the earth is flat. He doesn't reference the 'recent studies'. Finally a google search on Alistair shows him as author of another article Mandatory masks are an insult to our intelligence. This puts him at odds with the vast majority of the scientific community which has repeatedly shown that mask wearing as an effective method of reducing exposure and transmission of the corona virus.

She talks about how the mortality rate is lower than was 'expected' from a novel virus because of varying degrees of immune response due to other corona viruses. The problem I have with this is 17.5 million cases and 680,000 deaths so far (translates to about 0.4% mortality) with no end in sight until we have vaccines and/or treatments. It's all very nice for a theoretical epidemiologist to say that deaths are a lower percentage than expected. She might have a different reaction if one of her family died from it or god forbid her.

the 2nd question is from Mutaz Ahmed : When the serological studies were conducted a couple of months ago, antibody rates were very low in the UK. Is that because people weren’t vulnerable to infection, or because once they were infected they had some level of innate immunity?

She refers to studies (unreferenced) that indicate "that slums of Buenos Aires, which reports a 50% seroprevalence. And there have been studies from Lodi, Italy, where it is I think 60%" and goes on to say that while there is uncertainty in these studies that "I think very few people would agree that exposure rates in London are less than 20%" again unreferenced. She then leaps to the conclusion that

"The picture that we’re getting is heterogeneous. But even in hotspots, apart from a few reports, they’re still quite low. So why is that?
One reason might be that lockdown stopped the spread of infection, so it was halted at a stage when, say, 20% of people were immune and the rest of the people were still susceptible to infection. Well, under those circumstances, the easing of lockdown should result in fairly rapid growth of cases. And that’s not something we’re seeing."

A different conclusion might be that after the initial lockdown people wore masks and tried to maintain social distancing and in general were cautious about reducing exposure.

It will probably take too long to dissect piece by piece but here are some other 'highlights'.

"The fifth piece of this jigsaw could be that there is some seasonality. I suspect that in the winter it will probably come back, but hopefully only to the regions where it was kept from going by lockdown, and where the seroprevalence levels are genuinely extremely low. "

We don't seem to have seasonality in the US, where currently the worst outbreaks are in the southern states. If there is seasonality, it may have more to do with the fact that in areas with cold winters people stay indoors where transmission occurs more easily, while in areas with very hot summers people stay indoors to stay cool also facilitating transmission.

Alastair: It’s interesting that you mentioned folklore. In the West we have this idea that we want to eliminate disease ..... In some parts of Asia there is a very different approach, it’s more about accommodating yourself to the natural world, and cultivating a more holistic view of how you live with disaster. ....

"Maybe it has something to do with coming from an eastern tradition, but I’d like to think it’s strange because we live with infectious diseases. We do accommodate infectious diseases into our social contract, really. We know that this is a threat we have to deal with."

It is out of context, but the 'eastern traditions' of China (including Taiwan and Hong Kong), Korea and Japan have indeed accommodated infectious diseases into their social contract by wearing masks even before Covid and intensively testing and contact tracing.

Alastair: So you think that the New Zealand approach, eradicating the virus, is both functionally silly and also immoral?

"Well, I don’t know whether I’d go so far as to say it’s immoral. It seems to be very short-sighted, how can it possibly keep the virus out?

I think the smugness, the self-congratulation with which it’s presented is misplaced. The self-righteous attitude is completely ridiculous. If it turns out that the rest of the world, through herd immunity or vaccination, manages to reduce the risk of infection, then what New Zealand will have done would be tantamount to not vaccinating your own child. Just waiting for everyone else to vaccinate their children and then go “ok it’s all safe now."

I frankly don't even understand her response. It's ridiculous to minimize deaths while the world comes up with a vaccine. I guess is her essential point that let the virus ravage. We'll get herd immunity sooner or later, and meantime let the unlucky ones die (note the polio example I gave for some of the survivors) or isolate the high risk from everybody else indefinitely (also called involuntary confinement) or at least until there's a vaccine or herd immunity.

I notice that she never advocates for reducing exposure by social distancing, mask wearing or contact tracing. In fact she says "I’m 55 years old, there’s some slight risk out there. But I would be willing to take that, just as I do with the flu. There’s a risk I might die of flu, but I’m willing to take that risk, because I know that if I don’t then flu will appear as it did before, it will enter the population of immunologically naive individuals, and then there will be a high risk of infection which will have a disproportionate effect on the vulnerable sector of the population. "

What I get is that its patriotic or noble to allow yourself to get sick and possibly die because they're ain't nothing you can do about it, a view maybe more suited to the 18th or 19th century than the 21st where we've already successfully suppressed many deadly epidemic diseases. It may be our hubris to think that we think that we can extend life and conquer diseases, but it is what makes us human IMO.

The article also talks about LOCKDOWN where now there are very few areas which are still in full lockdown. This is the problem with this viewpoint. It was never about lockdown until there's a cure or vaccine. It was always about opening up while minimizing risk.

I may have rambled on too long, but hope that I've pointed out some of the flaws in the article. Thanks for reading this.
 
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North_Sky

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View attachment 75959

Well...based on today's data.
USA has more Total Cases, more New Cases, more Total Deaths, more New Deaths, more Active Cases, more Serious, Critical.
And it's worse even adjusted for population, worse Tot. Cases/1M pop, worse Deaths/1M pop.
How is this better than Brazil, India or Mexico?
It is not true, for even one number.
Can we please keep the discussion based on reality?
Then Thomas won't have to close it down.
No doubt the numbers and ranks will alter over time but even then how will it be acceptable to claim "at least there's more dead in ###"?

Best wishes
David
I was referring to Florida, not all USA. I thought ...
But yes, you are correct...in a total population of 331,161,077 as of Friday, July 31, 2020 in the USA, and with almost 160,00 deaths the US (all states) tops that list in the world.

Sorry David that you took it differently than what I was referring to.

Cheers,
Bob
 

phoenixdogfan

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All we have to do is do the math. In the US we have 4.5milion reported cases with 150k deaths. That's a death rate of 3.6% for every reported case. If herd immunity requires 60-70% of the entire population be infected (and it assumes the immunity conferred to the survivors is at least durable enough to last until the 60-70% infection rate occurs which is a mighty big "if"), that means a nation of 329 million (the US) will have to have 197-230 million of its population infected, and will sustain a 3.6% fatality rate. That 7.1-8.3 million dead.
 

Thomas_A

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All we have to do is do the math. In the US we have 4.5milion reported cases with 150k deaths. That's a death rate of 3.6% for every reported case. If herd immunity requires 60-70% of the entire population be infected (and it assumes the immunity conferred to the survivors is at least durable enough to last until the 60-70% infection rate occurs which is a mighty big "if"), that means a nation of 329 million (the US) will have to have 197-230 million of its population infected, and will sustain a 3.6% fatality rate. That 7.1-8.3 million dead.
The number of reported cases never equals the true number of cases.
 

phoenixdogfan

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The number of reported cases never equals the true number of cases.
Even assuming that neither does the number of true deaths. New York experienced record numbers of respiratory and cardiac related deaths not formally attributed to Covid. And even if the number of deaths are only 1 percent, it will still be a holocaust.
 
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All we have to do is do the math. In the US we have 4.5milion reported cases with 150k deaths. That's a death rate of 3.6% for every reported case. If herd immunity requires 60-70% of the entire population be infected (and it assumes the immunity conferred to the survivors is at least durable enough to last until the 60-70% infection rate occurs which is a mighty big "if"), that means a nation of 329 million (the US) will have to have 197-230 million of its population infected, and will sustain a 3.6% fatality rate. That 7.1-8.3 million dead.
Mortality rate requires us to know the total number of completed cases, not all cases.
 

Thomas_A

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Even assuming that neither does the number of true deaths. New York experienced record numbers of respiratory and cardiac related deaths not formally attributed to Covid. And even if the number of deaths are only 1 percent, it will still be a holocaust.
Agreed that neither reported deaths nor cases are true numbers. But you estimation assumes that there are no other factors that reduce R0 such as social/physical distancing.
 

North_Sky

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That seems like a great place to live, spectacular nature, cool city not far... (that was the useless comment of the day)
I think the climate is very nice year round.
There's ocean all around, great fishing, there are some very big trees, nice forests, mountains, views to kill 4, killer whales, snow on top, beautiful people and women and children, peaceful people, awesome musicians, awesome seafood, ... an island worth to live on and be happy for an eternity.
 

mansr

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And even if the number of deaths are only 1 percent, it will still be a holocaust.
The normal annual death rate in most western countries is around 1%. The total (attributed) covid-19 deaths to date in the UK is about 46,000, or 8% of the annual rate. It looks like a lot because 90% of those extra deaths occurred in April and May. At the peak, the daily death rate was nearly twice the normal. Had the extra deaths been spread over a year, nobody but the statisticians would have even noticed. Of course, without the lockdown, there's no telling how bad it might have got.
 

North_Sky

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Except for being unknown source and out of whack with published figures - death count for 2020 period seems too high for France. Asked for source, and posted a reliable source for world data above but no response.
The data is not always reflective of reality. Main thing's to be alive and maintain a proper equilibrium...protecting others among us all.
 

mansr

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Agreed that neither reported deaths nor cases are true numbers.
We can assume that virtually all deaths, regardless of cause, are registered. Comparing weekly death rates to the average over a few previous years thus gives a good measure of the severity of the epidemic. Excess deaths will show up whether or not they were correctly attributed.
 

Thomas_A

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We can assume that virtually all deaths, regardless of cause, are registered. Comparing weekly death rates to the average over a few previous years thus gives a good measure of the severity of the epidemic. Excess deaths will show up whether or not they were correctly attributed.
Sure we can look at excess death, it is the best one that can be used. Some errors will be there however since spread and deaths from many other infectious diseases also decrease substantially due to social distancing.
 

North_Sky

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All we have to do is do the math. In the US we have 4.5milion reported cases with 150k deaths. That's a death rate of 3.6% for every reported case. If herd immunity requires 60-70% of the entire population be infected (and it assumes the immunity conferred to the survivors is at least durable enough to last until the 60-70% infection rate occurs which is a mighty big "if"), that means a nation of 329 million (the US) will have to have 197-230 million of its population infected, and will sustain a 3.6% fatality rate. That 7.1-8.3 million dead.
In the USA; 160,000 Coronavirus related deaths by Tuesday morning coming up.

But the number of deaths is very relative; the number of infected people is a better representation. And we know by now that many survivors are living with affected organs for pretty much the rest of their lives ... lungs, heart, liver, veins, blood circulation, blood cloth, brain cells, etc., etc., etc.

This virus is no picnic, and no one is immune, including young kids.
Scientists are not talking anymore about herd immunity; they're talking about self distancing, wearing masks, washing hands, good hygiene, good common sense, no large gatherings, protection, safety, no risk, sacrifices, cooling off, adapting, ... a new secured life out of our usual habits.

The numbers today are nowhere near tomorrow's numbers and affected people ...
Only us can decide of tomorrow's numbers and the number of infected/affected people...nobody else.
 
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